Thursday, August 23, 2007

Aerial Spraying

There is a lot of activity and noise in our airspace this morning, with a plane spraying the emerging weeds in the surrounding paddocks. Our countryside is so steep that it can't be done via the ground, so each year the planes come through and bomb the area, then come back another time to spread super-phosphate fertiliser. The Strzelecki Ranges have had major infestations of Ragwort in the past, so early each season the farmers must get on top of the new plants. It is sad to be pumping herbicide into our beautiful hills, but the alternative would probably be worse.

All our fruit trees, vegetable garden and growing flower garden are all popping buds with spring coming. The pilot has been warned to give our garden a wide berth, so I hope he heeds it.

I'll be glad when it's over. I can smell the spray odour in the air, the sheep are frightened. The plane roars dangerously low over the house, and we resist the instinct to duck. If we get a pilot we know, he deliberately bombs us, then waggles his wings as he passes. The pilot up there today crashed his plane last season, so it's not all 'plane' sailing.

My partner, Durwin's father used to be a aerial crop duster, and the family's nearby property has the air strip that they all use.

"An optimist is the human personification of Spring" .... Susan J. Bissonette

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